Charles Eric Larsen, 52, a life-long resident of Durham, passed away on Feb. 6, 2013.
Charlie was born on June 4, 1960, in Middletown to the late Nell and Arved Larsen, of Durham. From the start, Charlie was a gift to everyone around him with his sweet smile, his cheery outlook and his love of life. If you ever asked Charlie how his day was, he always replied "great". He lived life by the motto," Do one good deed every day" and he brightened the world with this outlook. Charlie was very involved in his community. If you know Durham at all, you probably know Charlie, and for this reason, many have said that he was "Honorary Mayor" of Durham.
He was a long- time honorary member of the Durham Volunteer Fire Company and a member of the Coginchaug High School Pep Band for over 35 years. He was a Boy Scout as a young man and also played Little League baseball. Charlie was active in Special Olympics
for over 40 years, held 52 gold medals and traveled to two International Special Olympics. He would often quote the Special Olympics oath "Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." He was employed by Stop and Shop in Wallingford for 18 years and took great pride in being the "best bagger". Charlie was guided through his many years of employment by the wonderful staff at Kuhn Employment Opportunities in Meriden. He spent many happy times at recreation events sponsored by M.A.R.C. Cromwell. Charlie had so many things that he loved in life and these included: his family, the New York Mets and Giants, the Durham firemen, conducting his music, dancing, matchbox cars, playing marbles, learning about colleges, McDonald's chocolate chip cookies, hitting a golf ball, helping people, and giving hugs. He cared about anyone that entered his life.
Charlie is survived by his sisters, Lisa Larsen and Tina (Larsen) Gossner and her husband, Mark Gossner, all of Durham; two brothers, Arved and his wife Donna of Illinois and John Larsen and his wife Mindy of Texas. Charlie also loved his 11 nieces and nephews, Anissa and Jenna Mack, Soren, Noah and Kirsten Larsen, Steve, Chris and Nichole Larsen, and Hannah, Julia and Sam Gossner. Charlie loved to hear about his many great-nieces and nephews. Along with his parents, Charlie was predeceased by his sister, Pam (Larsen) Mack, of Guilford.
A celebration of Charlie's life will be held on Saturday, Feb. 23, at 2 p.m. at Coginchaug Regional High School. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Charlie may be sent to The Durham Volunteer Fire Company, P.O. Box 154, Durham, CT, 06422 or Kuhn Employment Opportunities, P.O Box 941, Meriden, CT 06450.
Messages of condolence may be sent to the family at www.doolittlefuneralservice.com.